Re­view: Mad Catz Ar­cade FightStick

US$200, mad­

Australian T3 - - CONTENTS -

Crafted by Ja­pan’s ar­cade gam­ing ex­perts this is an Xbox One pe­riph­eral with cred

As there’s only one Xbox One fight­ing game at present –

KillerIn­stinct – this pe­riph­eral that’s built for ar­cade brawl­ing on a next-gen level is the def­i­ni­tion of a niche prod­uct.

love Great build qual­ity. Cus­tomis­able but­tons and de­sign hate Only one fight­ing game to play. No head­set in­put T3 says The best stick out there, although the fight­ing genre is se­ri­ously lim­ited on Xbox One

But it’s a niche prod­uct that boasts some real cred­i­bil­ity, with the stick and but­tons both made by Tokyo-based Sanwa, the sup­plier of parts for the coun­try’s still-pop­u­lar ar­cade cab­i­nets. You can feel the qual­ity as soon as you start play­ing. Hugely cus­tomis­able, the stick comes with a screw­driver so that you can open it up and re­place or re­pair the but­tons, print out and add your own art­work, or store other tools in­side. Tech­ni­cally, it will work with any game con­trolled by a D-pad, but it’s clearly tuned and in­tended to work with fast-fin­gered fight­ing games.

We’d like it to be com­pat­i­ble with con­soles other than Xbox One – even just back­wards com­pat­i­bil­ity with Xbox 360 would help – and it’s worth not­ing that the FightStick doesn’t have a socket for a head­set, so you’re de­pen­dent on Kinect if you want to talk to peo­ple on­line. That last one’s a par­tic­u­larly strange omis­sion con­sid­er­ing how pop­u­lar mul­ti­player is in the fight­ing genre.

There are some neat touches here, like the lock mech­a­nism that dis­ables the nav­i­ga­tional but­tons to stop you in­ter­rupt­ing play ac­ci­den­tally, but un­til there are more games to play this, sadly, is un­likely to score a KO.

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